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MaRS Innovation’s top 10 portfolio stories for 2014

MaRS Innovation enjoyed an exceptional year in 2014. Our team continues to collaborate with researchers within our membership to help bridge the commercialization gap between their world-leading research and creating successful start-up companies or licenses. Here are our picks for the top 10 news stories from MaRS Innovation's portfolio. 1. Triphase Accelerator Corporation, in which MaRS Innovation is an investor, started the year with a bang by signing a collaboration and option agreement with Celgene Corporation. In October, Triphase initiated a Phase I clinical study ... Read more

SciBX covers Encycle’s partnership with IRICoR, MaRS Innovation and Merck

"The first disclosed grant under Merck & Co. Inc.'s Canadian translational initiative will bolster the ability of macrocycle-based Encycle Therapeutics Inc. to conduct lead optimization of its integrin [a4b7,] inhibitors for inflammatory bowel disease," writes Michael J. Haas in SciBX's feature on the partnership, "Merck Encycles through Canada." The article appears in the publication's December 4, 2014 issue. Read the Encycle press release that prompted this article. The article explores the current grant partnership between Merck, Encycle Therapeutics, MaRS Innovation, the Institute for ... Read more

Encycle Therapeutics developing lead molecule to tackle inflammatory bowel disease

Company's collaborative partnership with IRICoR, Université de Montréal and MaRS Innovation, funded by Merck Canada, to advance macrocycle drug TORONTO and MONTREAL, Nov. 10, 2014 — Encycle Therapeutics Inc., a biotechnology start-up founded by Dr. Andrei Yudin of the University of Toronto in partnership with MaRS Innovation, is developing its lead orally-bioavailable macrocycle drug to target integrin a4b7, which is involved in the inflammatory process in a number of diseases, most notably for inflammatory bowel disease. This announcement was covered in SciBX, Drug Discovery ... Read more

AvidBiologics and National Research Council of Canada to collaborate on antibody-drug conjugates

Toronto-based AvidBiologics Inc., a leading Canadian biotech company, and the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) are collaborating on one of the most promising advances in the fight against cancer: antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs). Recently signed research and licensing agreements will enable both organizations to continue developing a series of ADCs targeting breast, lung, and head-and-neck cancers. Unlike chemotherapy, ADCs specifically seek and destroy cancer cells, with minimal impact on healthy cells. "The work performed by NRC is crucial to assembling the data package ... Read more

Vasomune Therapeutics awarded $1.5 million to advance lead asset for renal disease

TORONTO (October 20, 2014) — Vasomune Therapeutics, a biotechnology start-up founded by Drs. Dan Dumont and Paul Van Slyke of Sunnybrook Research Institute (SRI) in partnership with MaRS Innovation, has received $1.5 million, in part through Genome Canada’s Genomic Applications Partnership Program (GAPP), to advance Vasculotide, the company’s lead Tie-2 activating agent, towards clinical development. This announcement was covered in Biotechnology Focus. The Honourable Ed Holder, Minister of State (Science and Technology) and Dr. Pierre Meulien, president and CEO of Genome Canada, announced ... Read more

University of Toronto’s entrepreneurship programs to share over $3 million from province’s Campus-Linked Accelerator Program

UTEST among the four U of T entrepreneurship programs to be funded through Ontario's CLA program The University of Toronto will receive $3,056,000 in funding over two years from the Ontario government to increase its training and support for student entrepreneurship. The funding is part of the Campus-Linked Accelerator Program (CLA), announced today by Reza Moridi, Ontario’s Minister of Research and Innovation, and Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities. “Fostering the entrepreneurial spirit among students is a key component of Ontario’s Youth Jobs Strategy, ... Read more

Accel-Rx, the national health sciences accelerator, launches as a Centre of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR)

MaRS Innovation among founding partner CECRs; Accel-Rx will provide funds to new biotechnology start-ups emerging within MI's portfolio VANCOUVER, BC (Aug. 25, 2014) –With the awarding of $14.5M under the Canadian government’s Networks of Centres of Excellence (Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR)) Program, as announced earlier this morning by the Honourable Ed Holder, Minister of State for Science and Technology, Accel-Rx - Canada’s Health Sciences Accelerator is officially launched. Media coverage of this announcement: CBC's Inside Politics blog, IT Business ... Read more

Accel-Rx Health Sciences Accelerator to Partner with BDC Venture Capital

MaRS Innovation co-partner in pan-Canadian effort to help create up to 20 leading start-up companies CEBIO International Conference, San Diego – June 25, 2014: BDC Venture Capital and the Accel-Rx Health Sciences Accelerator (Accel-Rx) announced today a collaboration to provide critical seed funding to new and emerging Canadian health sciences companies. This announcement was covered in TechVibes, PE HUB and BetaKit. Together, Accel-Rx, BDC Venture Capital, and CDRD Ventures Inc. (CVI) which will provide the initial management to launch Accel-Rx operations, would focus on ... Read more

XLV Diagnostics Inc. secures $3 million Series A from Boston-based investor

THUNDER BAY, ON (May 28,2014) – XLV Diagnostics Inc., a MaRS Innovation (MI) start-up company based in Thunder Bay and specializing in low-cost, next-generation digital mammography machines, has closed a $3 million Series A investment round with Boston-based Bernard M. Gordon Charitable Remainder Unitrust. The funding will support continued product development and regulatory approval. XLV’s product will provide mammography image quality equivalent to top-of-the-line mammography machines currently in use, and will do so at a fraction of the cost of current generation ... Read more
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